Sunday, February 26, 2017


Today, celebrities are dressing up for Hollywood Prom Night.  Tonight, the Oscars® will be handed out in Hollywood.  This year, because of the new person in the White House, acceptance speeches may be politically charged.  Also this year, history could be made because of the racial inclusion in several categories.  This inclusion is cool water on a desert oasis after two hot consecutive years of "Oscars So White."  The favorite to win Best Supporting Actress is Viola Davis for FENCES.  She made Oscar history by just getting nominated again.  Did CBS Sunday Morning producers and writers remember that?
Personally, I feel Viola should've been nominated in the Best Actress category as she was the lead female character in the film.  Just like years ago when little Tatum O'Neal won Best Supporting Actress for 1973's PAPER MOON.  That wonderful comedy directed by Peter Bogdanovich was based on a novel called ADDIE PRAY.  Tatum played Addie Pray.  So who was she supporting if the story was about her?  But...that's Hollywood.  Also, Hollywood seems to have a tendency to award more black women for supporting rather than leading.  Halle Berry is still the only black woman who won an Oscar for Best Actress.  That was for the 2001 drama, MONSTER'S BALL.  Look at the black women who've won Best Supporting Actress:  Whoopi Goldberg, Jennifer Hudson, Mo'Nique, Octavia Spencer and Lupita Nyong'o.  Maybe campaigning for Viola to get a Best Supporting Actress Oscar nomination was a shrew political move to give her an edge to be victorious for FENCES.
ABC/Disney now has a lock on the Oscars when it comes to airing the nominations live and broadcasting the Oscars telecast.  With all due respect to ABC entertainment reporters Chris Connelly and Jcss Cagle, who will both be on the red carpet for ABC's pre-show at 4p PT/7p ET, I was really surprised when big Oscar history eluded them live on GOOD MORNING AMERICA moments after the nominations were announced.  They mentioned Meryl Streep's 20th nomination.  Connelly mentioned "Oscars So White."  No one pointed out that Viola Davis is now the most Oscar-nominated black actress in Oscar history.  And she's the star of a hit series on....ABC.  No one mentioned that 2-time Oscar winner Denzel Washington is now the most Oscar-nominated black actor.  And how many black actors have won two Oscars for acting and also directed a film that's a nominee for Best Picture?  How many black actors have directed a black actress to a Best Actress Oscar nomination?  Yes, Denzel and Viola made big history with FENCES.  Also, for the first time in Oscar history, black talent is nominated for an Oscar in each acting category.  Three films about black life in America are up for Best Picture -- FENCES, MOONLIGHT and HIDDEN FIGURES.  MOONLIGHT, a lyrical film about the challenges of growing up black and gay, and HIDDEN FIGURES, an inspiring true story about three intellectual black women who worked at NASA in the early 1960s and helped launch John Glenn into space.

Today's edition of CBS SUNDAY MORNING gave attention to movies and the Oscar nominations.  There was a segment on movie quotes, movie graphics, movie stars and David Edelstein gave his Oscar predictions and mentioned the "Oscars So White" controversy.  But there was not one single black contributor to add to the movie talk.

There was a segment on the late Best Actress Oscar winner, Princess Grace Kelly.  If I worked for CBS SUNDAY, I would've given Jane Pauley the information that Grace Kelly won in one of Hollywood's hottest and most legendary Best Actress Oscar competitions.  The two front runners were Judy Garland for A STAR IS BORN and Grace Kelly for THE COUNTRY GIRL.  Hollywood expected that Garland would win.  That was also a groundbreaking year because Dorothy Dandridge was also up for Best Actress of 1954 thanks to her work in the musical drama, CARMEN JONES.  Dorothy Dandridge was the first black woman to be nominated for the Best Actress Academy Award.  Dandridge was terrific in that film. However, because of race, she didn't get another good Hollywood script offer for five years.
Meryl Streep made Oscar history with her 20th Oscar nomination. Viola Davis made Oscar history with her 3rd Oscar nomination.

Yes.  I could've added some good info to today's show if I worked for CBS SUNDAY MORNING.  Full disclosure:  For years after my VH1 and CBS Late Night years, I tried to work there -- but I never got a response.

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